Stretching the Stipend


Your Stipend

Teachers selected to participate in four-week projects will receive $3,300 (as taxable income). Participants will be responsible for covering their own taxes. Stipends are intended to help cover travel expenses to and from the project location, books and other research expenses, and living expenses for the duration of the period spent in residence.  Applicants to all projects, especially those held abroad, should note that supplements will not be given in cases where the stipend is insufficient to cover all expenses.

Because our institute is going abroad, NEH has allowed us to get you the first half of your stipend before the start of the institute.  We are trying to prepare checks for the first half of the stipend ($1,650) to mail to you (or via direct deposit), if we can, by sometime in June. The other half will be presented to you at the farewell party or deposited for you at about that time or the following week. Any one who does not arrive or does not complete the program will need to return the stipend to us (pro-rated, as may be the case).

If you budget well, your stipend should cover most of your expenses.  For instance, you might pay $850 USD for airfare, $900 for one month’s lodging, have perhaps $1,000 or so for food, and the remainder for taxes and incidentals. Of course, one variable will be your tax liability, which you might wish to clarify with your personnel administrator where you work.

Many of the small furnished apartments will cost less than that $900 for lodging.  The Parador apartments, when shared, cost about $650 per person (and you each have your own queen bed).  For more on housing costs and recommendations, please see our Housing web page,


If you can save on airfare or lodging, you will have more for food, incidentals, and taxes.  NEH has asked that you pay for your lunches even when we are on excursions, and that you pay for your admissions to museums, archaeological sites, and the like.  We were originally going to withhold money to do this, but our program officer said it was preferable for you all to take care of these expenses yourselves.  NEH does not allow any budget for the welcome or farewell parties, but the Director will cover these expenses (which will have to be fairly modest).  A typical archaeological site entrance fee is $50+ pesos (perhaps about $5 USD).  You can check the syllabus to see how many entrance fees we will be incurring, but there are not a great number.

Dining Out

Just to give you an idea about the cost of meals out — breakfast: if you get scrambled eggs, fresh squeezed juice or sliced fruit, bread and butter, and coffee at the charming cafe Los Cuiles on Abasolo, it will cost you about the equivalent of $5–6 USD).  If you go to El Quinque on Alcalá for a home-cooked comida corrida at lunch time, you will pay the equivalent of about $6 USD.  A sample lunch would be lemonade, a fillet of fish, rice, and salad.  And the evening meal in Oaxaca is often a light snack or an appetizer at a restaurant — for instance, a torta (hot sandwich) at La Olla costs the equivalent of about $5–6 USD.  If you add a beverage, you might spend another 20 pesos.  So, this sample day (typical for me) leaves me spending a total of less than $20 USD on food.  If you had to add an entrance fee, you are still under $25 for the day!   If you took a taxi someone that day (perhaps you live 10 blocks from the classroom site and you are running late), you would probably add $35 pesos ($2.85 USD) to your total.  That’s still under $30 for the day.  If you wanted a special latte as a pick-me-up during a morning break, perhaps from Los Cuiles again, that might add another $30 pesos ($2.50 USD).  You are still spending less than $35 USD for that day — under budget!

For more information on dining recommendations, please see our page about Dining Out.